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PGCE(i),Ph.D(hist) Greek citizen: work in 2nd ed. in M.East?

 
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van_6000



Joined: 07 Feb 2012
Posts: 35

PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2016 3:09 am    Post subject: PGCE(i),Ph.D(hist) Greek citizen: work in 2nd ed. in M.East? Reply with quote

Hi everyone,

I have recently changed career path (from University to Secondary education)and I am aiming eventually to teach in private international junior/high schools in the Middle East.

Given my details below, where in the Middle East would it be more likely that I might find employment?

-- Already teaching Grades 8-10 in a private bilingual school in Taipei, Taiwan (Subject teacher: History, Geography, American Civics, Literature, and ESL)
-- Thinking of getting a PGCEi (based in Bangkok; sponsored by the University of Nottingham)
-- I have a Ph.D. in History (from a British university)
-- Greek citizen
-- 50 years old (hoping to get to the Middle east in September 2018 or 2019, depending on when I will be able to finish my PGCEi)
-- I have taught mostly ESl but also Literature in Colleges/Universities and cram schools in Taiwan since 2002

Do I have any hopes? And if so, where in the Middle East?

I remember the forum's suggestions a while back (when I was writing from Greece without any secondary school teaching experience except in ESL) that non-native speakers and especially without a 120-hour CELTA qualification can't really make it except with dubious places and agencies. Since then, I have been able to get my foot in the secondary education door, for references and experience.

I can't afford a full PGCE. I'm hoping that my chances into the Middle East may have improved as a subject teacher in 2ndary ed. as opposed to a non-native speaker with a Ph.D. looking for ESL jobs. Any advice would be highly appreciated.


Last edited by van_6000 on Wed Oct 26, 2016 3:16 am; edited 1 time in total
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MuscatGary



Joined: 03 Jun 2013
Posts: 1364
Location: Flying around the ME...

PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2016 3:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

You could try the Choueifat schools located around the ME although some people find them a bit rigid.
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nomad soul



Joined: 31 Jan 2010
Posts: 11371
Location: The real world

PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2016 4:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Unfortunately, your current qualifications aren't likely to land you a position in the region. For starters, the governments of KSA, Qatar, Kuwait, and Bahrain do not recognize teaching certs/licenses and degrees that entailed online study. The UAE seems to be leaning that way as well. Additionally, being a non-native English speaker with degrees unrelated to TESOL or education won't get your CV a second look for secondary school positions. Ditto for your lack of a valid TEFL qualification.

Be aware that teaching in the GCC isn't as lucrative as it was 5+ years ago. The sagging oil industry has affected the region's economies. Plus, there's a big push for qualified nationals to replace expats.

This isn't what you wanted to hear, but frankly, if you're doing well in Taiwan, consider continuing your career there.
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van_6000



Joined: 07 Feb 2012
Posts: 35

PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2016 6:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

nomad soul wrote:
...with degrees unrelated to TESOL or education won't get your CV a second look for secondary school positions...


Thanks for the advice, Nomad Soul.

Would it make any difference if instead of the PGCEi(long distance) one were to pursue a Masters degree in Education face to face? I mean, given my other handicaps (no TEFL or native-speaker status)? There is a program for a Masters degree in education at Framingham College (Taipei, Taiwan). The name of the college made me think twice but from reviews and personal acquaintances I saw that it is legitimate. That would be a face to face programme. Would that raise the possibilities even slightly?
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van_6000



Joined: 07 Feb 2012
Posts: 35

PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2016 7:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

MuscatGary wrote:
You could try the Choueifat schools located around the ME although some people find them a bit rigid.


Thanks Gary. But I know nothing about them, I'm afraid. Could you please direct me to some link or other place where there might be some info on these schools? Many thanks
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kazpat



Joined: 04 Jul 2010
Posts: 139
Location: Kazakhstan

PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2016 11:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Framingham State is a good university located in Massachusetts and many fine K-12 teachers graduate from there. What about the name gave you pause?Smile

I have had teachers who work with me earn their MEd. abroad through the international on site program that you referenced. However, the MEd. while very useful, won't get you licensed to teach. To the best of my limited knowledge about Middle East opportunities this is what you need. The MEd. is a good option if you are already licensed through a undergraduate program or you want to move into admin at a current school. A few teachers I know in Kazakhstan came from or went to ADEC and the license / QTS is a must for subject teachers. For a future in international schools you should try to work out financing for education options that get you licensed to teach in a subject i.e. history or humanities.
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nomad soul



Joined: 31 Jan 2010
Posts: 11371
Location: The real world

PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2016 12:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

van_6000 wrote:
MuscatGary wrote:
You could try the Choueifat schools located around the ME although some people find them a bit rigid.

I know nothing about them, I'm afraid. Could you please direct me to some link or other place where there might be some info on these schools?

Just do a basic Internet search on them. Confused

and van_6000 wrote:
Would it make any difference if instead of the PGCEi(long distance) one were to pursue a Masters degree in Education face to face? I mean, given my other handicaps (no TEFL or native-speaker status)? There is a program for a Masters degree in education at Framingham College (Taipei, Taiwan). The name of the college made me think twice but from reviews and personal acquaintances I saw that it is legitimate. That would be a face to face programme. Would that raise the possibilities even slightly?

As kazpat pointed out, you'd still need to be certified/licensed to teach, and private employers also want to see 1-3 years' teaching experience gained in the UK, US, etc. -- the whole package. The Gulf tends to recruit qualified k-12 teachers from the west; that's your competition. Case in point, see More UK teachers opt to take their talents abroad and Big need for foreign teachers at UAE schools.

Why the push for the Mid East? At age 50, by the time you add another degree, get qualified, and possibly gain several years' post-qualification western experience, your age will become an additional factor. It's really not worth the expense and time.
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van_6000



Joined: 07 Feb 2012
Posts: 35

PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2016 12:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

kazpat wrote:
Framingham State is a good university located in Massachusetts and many fine K-12 teachers graduate from there. What about the name gave you pause?Smile


The fact that I had never heard of the institution's name before. Of course, I knew it was very possible that my ignorance of it did not necessarily mean that it was not legitimate or even prestigious. But I had to confirm this before abandoning my somewhat natural scepticism. Smile

kazpat wrote:
The MEd. while very useful, won't get you licensed to teach. To the best of my limited knowledge about Middle East opportunities this is what you need. ...


Thanks for the info, Kazpat. You are right. Actually, I had already been told that by fully qualified teachers who had taught in Thailand and Taiwan before moving to the Middle East. But the same friends also suggested that the M.Ed and PGCEi can in fact suffice for landing a teaching job in some private schools - I am, after all, working for one such school in Taipei - albeit neither the most prestigious nor the best paying ones.



kazpat wrote:
For a future in international schools you should try to work out financing for education options that get you licensed to teach in a subject i.e. history or humanities.


I would like to pursue this but I am not sure how to go about it. I would have to continue working full time as my family depends on this. The above-mentioned PGCEi and M.Ed. programmes allow for that. I think a full PGCE would require my presence in the UK, away from my family and source of income. Is there another way?

Again, thanks.
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van_6000



Joined: 07 Feb 2012
Posts: 35

PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2016 1:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

nomad soul wrote:

Why the push for the Mid East? At age 50, by the time you add another degree, get qualified, and possibly gain several years' post-qualification western experience, your age will become an additional factor. It's really not worth the expense and time.


Very good question. Actually, it's a bit difficult to answer. The basic aim is to live somewhere other than a Chinese environment, and to increase my income while decreasing my expenses such as taxes and rent. I have thought of Thailand and Indonesia but' assuming opportunities might exist there for me, salaries seem to be low.

The problem is that I had gotten stuck back in my native country, Greece, for three years until 2014 when I returned to Taiwan. For some really controversial and silly reason, the government here has declared war on private universities, and unfortunately I am not marketable outside Taiwan (except maybe mainland China) as far as academia is concerned. Add to that the stagnation of Taiwanese teaching salaries relative to the increasing cost of living, and so, I am looking for places where I can offset the above-mentioned financial drawbacks. Since I have had experience in both academia and primary and secondary education, I thought I'd try the latter. Of course, Dubai sounded ideal, or KSA (moneywise) but I had heard of non-native, non-QTS teachers in Oman... and also I figured that, unlike universities, private secondary schools always have patrons regardless of the economy. So I thought I'd pursue this. But I realise I am facing some rather daunting obstacles.
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kazpat



Joined: 04 Jul 2010
Posts: 139
Location: Kazakhstan

PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2016 6:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

In regards to teacher licensure programs, there are several alternative pathway programs in the USA because each state has a different system. I am sure there are various programs throughout the world, that is where google comes into play. However, with either further education or a practicum required, none including PGCE with QTS seem to fit what you need. Sounds like you should search for a country where your PhD and experience can be leveraged and the lack of QTS is not a deal breaker for either the institution or the visa. I can only really speak for Kazakhstan as I have been here a while, any school or even university that would consider you is not going to be further moved by an MA or PGCEi when you have a PhD. Thus anything that doesn't grant you QTS appears to be a waste of money. The Middle East seems to be a non-starter unfortunately. Best of luck in your search.
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nomad soul



Joined: 31 Jan 2010
Posts: 11371
Location: The real world

PostPosted: Thu Oct 27, 2016 1:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

van_6000 wrote:
The problem is that I had gotten stuck back in my native country, Greece, for three years until 2014 when I returned to Taiwan. For some really controversial and silly reason, the government here has declared war on private universities, and unfortunately I am not marketable outside Taiwan (except maybe mainland China) as far as academia is concerned. Add to that the stagnation of Taiwanese teaching salaries relative to the increasing cost of living, and so, I am looking for places where I can offset the above-mentioned financial drawbacks.

Your best bet may likely be China.
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MuscatGary



Joined: 03 Jun 2013
Posts: 1364
Location: Flying around the ME...

PostPosted: Thu Oct 27, 2016 2:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

van_6000 wrote:
MuscatGary wrote:
You could try the Choueifat schools located around the ME although some people find them a bit rigid.


Thanks Gary. But I know nothing about them, I'm afraid. Could you please direct me to some link or other place where there might be some info on these schools? Many thanks


Just Google it, the link will appear magically.
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veiledsentiments



Joined: 20 Feb 2003
Posts: 17604
Location: USA

PostPosted: Thu Oct 27, 2016 3:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Also do a search here... for Sabis/Choueifat schools.

Professional teachers from western systems don't much like it... to say the least. LOL (test test test...teach to the test)

VS
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van_6000



Joined: 07 Feb 2012
Posts: 35

PostPosted: Sat Oct 29, 2016 12:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

VeiledSentiments, NomadSoul, Kazpat, and MuscatGary, thanks guys for all your much appreciated and helpful input.
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Arenta



Joined: 24 Jul 2016
Posts: 120

PostPosted: Wed Aug 16, 2017 9:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

van_6000 wrote:
nomad soul wrote:

Why the push for the Mid East? At age 50, by the time you add another degree, get qualified, and possibly gain several years' post-qualification western experience, your age will become an additional factor. It's really not worth the expense and time.


Very good question. Actually, it's a bit difficult to answer. The basic aim is to live somewhere other than a Chinese environment, and to increase my income while decreasing my expenses such as taxes and rent. I have thought of Thailand and Indonesia but' assuming opportunities might exist there for me, salaries seem to be low.

The problem is that I had gotten stuck back in my native country, Greece, for three years until 2014 when I returned to Taiwan. For some really controversial and silly reason, the government here has declared war on private universities, and unfortunately I am not marketable outside Taiwan (except maybe mainland China) as far as academia is concerned. Add to that the stagnation of Taiwanese teaching salaries relative to the increasing cost of living, and so, I am looking for places where I can offset the above-mentioned financial drawbacks. Since I have had experience in both academia and primary and secondary education, I thought I'd try the latter. Of course, Dubai sounded ideal, or KSA (moneywise) but I had heard of non-native, non-QTS teachers in Oman... and also I figured that, unlike universities, private secondary schools always have patrons regardless of the economy. So I thought I'd pursue this. But I realise I am facing some rather daunting obstacles.


I realise this thread is nearly a year old but wanted to say, in case you are still in Taiwan, that it is possible to get a teaching position in KSA at secondary schools. One of the schools I taught at there was hiring non-native subject teachers without either a PGCE or any formal teaching qualification. Even two native speakers of English did not have any formal teaching qualification. There was only myself and one other native English teacher who did.

Other subject teachers were from various Mid East countries, some from KSA, and none had any teaching qualification at all. In fact, outside Anglosphere countries a formal teaching qualification seems to be a rarity. So it is possible to get a teaching position (maybe difficult teaching English as a non-native speaker) in the ME in a subject area like history, particularly as you have a degree from an English peaking country. This shows you have competence in the language. I'd give it a go if I were you. Good luck!
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